Group 1-winning trainer Geoff Scott-Smith has warned punters to tread warily when assessing NSW import Monkey Wrench’s prospects in his Victorian debut at Sunday afternoon’s Sale meeting.
As the winner of six of his ten starts and drawn in box one, Monkey Wrench will command great interest in the last of 12 races on the Sale card, the Cabinet Connections Grade 5 over 440m, to jump at 2.28pm.
However, Monkey Wrench hasn’t been seen in action since finishing unplaced at Bathurst back in July last year, while he will celebrate his fourth birthday on May 4, with Scott-Smith unsure of what to expect first-up after such a lengthy break.
“He belongs to Trent Anderson up in NSW, who’s reared Dundee Osprey (three-time Group 1 winner) and a few other dogs for me,” Scott-Smith explained.
“He’s had a few trainers but I don’t know a lot about it. He started off pretty well and ran some pretty good races and then all of a sudden went off the boil.
“Trent got in touch with me a while ago about taking Monkey Wrench and another dog called Motor City Tiger for the Launching Pad but the Launching Pad was cancelled.
“Because he hadn’t raced for so long he had a satisfactory trial at Sale and it was a reasonable sort of a run.
“He’s coming up four in May and he hasn’t raced for eight months. If a footballer hasn’t played a game for eight months it makes it pretty tough! He might come back as good as he was but he might not.
“He’s feeling good and I expect him to acquit himself okay but he might need a few races.”
Scott-Smith, who’s based at Pakenham South, also has Dundee Joker, a homebred son of former superstar Dundee Osprey, contesting race 7 at Sale.
“He’s a country dog but he does everything right; he boxes good, chases good and tries all the time,” said Scott-Smith.
“He’s usually thereabouts and I think he’s got a chance in a race like this.”